Please Try This

1.     Allow your tongue to rest on the base of your mouth and then try to swallow.

2.     You will find that you cannot swallow until the tongue makes contact with the roof of the mouth; thus creating a vacuum to seal the throat.

3.     This vacuum is fundamental to either air entering the windpipe OR food/saliva entering the gullet.


A bit in a horse’s mouth holds the tongue down and so interferes with this vital vacuum; – thus interfering with breathing & swallowing.  When a horse is racing - the lack of a proper vacuum often sucks the tongue down the throat thus preventing breathing and swallowing. This is called Dorsal Displacement of the Soft Palate; – DDSP which is “vet talk “ for asphyxia, choking, throttling, strangling & suffocating. Horses which suffer this in races or competition do not show the same problem when galloping free in a field. The simple answer is to remove the bit. However instead of removing the cause (the Bit) they tie the horse tongue to the lower jaw with a piece of cloth.

This practice is as vile a cruelty as one can ever imagine.

By Irene French


Bitless riding is a great way of riding for you and your horse.  You will have happier horses, trust and better communication.  Once we chuck away all the harsh gadgets and ride from our hearts, connect as one, the feeling is as one, `total connection` on a totally different level.

I stock a great selection of Bitless bridles, and if I don`t have the colour or size for you I can get one made up at no extra cost.   Choice of materials - BETA, biothane or webbing, 

A little bit of info regarding the various styles of bitless bridles:-

The Scawbrig -  This is a great little bridle for starting youngsters, or re-training older horses. It has a loose chin strap which tightens and releases, so most of the time there is no pressure.  It is very light and can be used for long lining too.  Great for riding as well.  This bridle will show you how out of balance you are actually riding.  If the chin strap pulls through to one side, you will know that you are not riding in balance, both reins have to be symmetrical, with a little on both reins to give the pressure and release all around the nose.  So it`s quite good for the rider to learn from this as well as the horse.

The Sidepull - Another great little bridle for starting youngsters, re-training/rehabilitating and great for riding and long lining.  I love this bridle, it is gentle and my Arabs love it.  There is no pressure as such, it is basically a bridle/headcollar, so no pressure and release.  

The Crossover - This is a popular bridle with some people and horses, it`s not my preferred bitless bridle, but I do sell them as some horses respond very well to the pressure and release of this bridle.  The pressure is around the jaw as the straps cross over and tighten, plus the poll and nose/chin area.  I have found some horses respond badly to this all over head pressure.

The Bosal - Light and easy bridle, Western style, the reins attach to a ring underneath the jaw, so no pressure points as such.  This style of bridle is used for neck reining riding.

Paso fino Bosal - This bridle was requested by Julie Targatt and her Paso Fino Horses in France, similar to a sidepull, except the reins are underneath the jaw, similar to the Bosal but with two rings.   So no actual pressure and release.

The Hackamore - People refer to this as a severe bridle, to be honest, with any bitless bridle you should ride from your seat/voice/focus and not rely on the head to control your horse.  If you rely on the head area too much, you are not communicating with your horse correctly.  So the hackamore is an o.k bridle if you ride from your seat.  However if you have continual pressure on the reins, this bridle will put too much pressure on the poll and nose area.

The Matrix -  This multi-functional bridle was launched a few years ago, I was the first one to trial it before it was on the market.  The Matrix converts to all the bitless bridles, so is a handy piece of kit for people with more than one horse or for people starting out bitless and not sure which bridle would best suit their horse.

For pics, prices and more info on my bridles click on Bitless Bridles Here you`ll see my Arabians modelling the various styles.


The horses mouth is one of the most sensitive parts of its anatomy.  Even the slightest pressure on the bars (a part of the jawbone) causes intense pain.  Curiously, the guidlines for good saddle fit require that no direct pressure should ever be placed on the bone of the spine, yet this same principle is deliberately flouted when it comes to placing a bit in the much more sensitive mouth.

When pressure of a bit on its lower jaw is applied, a horse tries to rid itself of this foreign object.  Through chewing movements of the tongue and jaw and salivating, it attempts to remove or spit the bit out.  However few people interpret these actions correctly, and most believe the idea that the horse is 'happily chewing on' or 'playing with' the bit.  When people see a horse salivating with a bit in its mouth they accept this gladly, having been taught that a horse must salivate in order to `ACCEPT THE BIT`

If any of this concerns you please read the book `Metal in the Mouth` by Dr. Robert Cook and Dr. Hiltrud Strasser.  This book is really informative and is a must for the sake of our equine friends health and well-being.

We have to stop using torture as a way to ride our horses,

 It`s time to "Bin the Bit" and make it a thing of the past!


10 Myths About Bits (Part I) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gfw5KIs28Ws

10 Myths About Bits (Part 2)http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9nHb9KXINRs

10 Myths About Bits (Part 3) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zcWR18ondxM

10 Myths About Bits (Part 4) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LLzpmKI-kqk